Monday, August 19, 2013

Jerry Rocha's "Take That, Real Dad"

On his new album “Take That, Real Dad,” Jerry Rocha proves to more than just his father that he really knows how to bring the funny. Anyone within earshot will find it hard to deny he is a comedic forced to be reckoned with. Raised by a single mom who had a lot of gay friends (no...that never happened) and an interesting explanation for what happens when God goes Number Two, Rocha was primed to be a comedian from his earliest years. 

Like most comics who are good at what they do, Rocha brings a fount of unique experiences to the table from which to springboard and knows exactly which points to hone in on to extract Maximum Humor. You don’t need to dream up a lot of absurd, far-fetched premises when you’ve encountered real-life adventures like letting a stranger on a bus borrow your phone or you've stumbled through the weirdest, shoe-flinging-est One Night Stand ever.

When it comes to original ideas and observations, though, Rocha has plenty. He has a good reason for wanting a Mexican in the White House (and it’s more than just rooting for la raza) and you’ll never view the jawas in Star Wars quite the same way again. He may be on to something...or he may just be paranoid from spending so much time around his very racist uncle. And yes, I would definitely watch BET’s version of a ghost hunting show if they promised it would be done just as Rocha supposes...even though each episode would only last a few minutes.

There are two especially strong bits that come at each end of the CD. The first one is Rocha’s material on his home state of Texas. He doesn’t paint the most flattering portrait in the world as he describes the rednecks’ zealous reaction to a magician and their fervent insistence on the proper pronunciation of “Humble.” Questionable rodeo announcers, the referee of a lesbian fight whose mantra could have saved thousands on 9/11, and Southern women who are dumb (but not really. But really) serve to round out a great section of his act.

The other high point comes when Rocha talks about his dealings with The Fairer Sex. Starting off with his evil ex (who, according to his impression of her, sounds like Marc Maron doing an impression of Mitzi Shore) and ending with his current relationship and  being a little too specific during the discussion of Future Kids, Rocha keeps the laughs coming.

I like that Rocha isn’t afraid to stray from his material and deal with the audience. Yet another highlight (have you picked up on the fact that there are a LOT of strong points on this album?) comes when he confronts what he initially perceives to be a heckler and turns out to be a woman choking on a cherry. That’s not a euphemism, although it sort of ends up being one.

As Rocha mentions, sometimes when we think we’re giving someone a compliment, it doesn’t really turn out to be much of one (I’m talking to you here, White People). So yes, this project is “super” but it’s also so much more than that. Pick one up for yourself and you won’t be disappointed. 

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